Madera school giving kids emotional resources as they learn from home

MADERA, Calif. (KFSN) -- As students across the Valley take their classes online, one Madera school is making sure their students have the academic and emotional resources they need.

Students and parents at Saint Joachim School are adjusting to the new normal of attending lessons online.

"I think, like most families around the country, homeschooling is new to us. It certainly was not in the plan," says parent Stacy Sablan.

She and her husband are homeschooling their four kids.

This includes school work online, videos, and phone calls with teachers, even switching classes at set times for the middle-schoolers.

They say one of the biggest hardships is emotional and social challenges.

"It happened in a 15-minute span, and no one thought immediately of the emotional impact. My 8th grader is coming to the reality that her graduation likely won't happen, her end of year activities will likely be postponed," says Sablan.

Says principal Darlene Lopez: "We can plan the greatest education online but it's very hard to get the social component. That's the heartbreak."

But the school is trying to combat this, calling families individually to check in.

"Yesterday my second grader had his first Zoom class meeting and the majority of his class and his teacher were on Zoom. He was able to see all of his classmates together, and instantly I saw his shoulders relax," says Sablan.

They say for now they're buckling down and making it work, but are eager for the day they can all return to the classroom.

"It's going to change education, and it's going to give us a greater appreciation for the brick and mortar school," says Lopez.

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